This past weekend I had the privilege to be aboard Lufthansa’s Flight 500 from Frankfurt to Rio de Janeiro. This specific flight would be no ordinary one as Lufthansa planned a surprise for passengers both at the gate and aboard the aircraft. A handful of members from the media were invited to take part and cover the event; obviously I was thrilled to be on the list! 🙂
For those of you not familiar with ‘Caipirinha’, it is the national drink of Brazil and is based on a mix of cachaca (sugar cane liquor), lime and sugar. After imbibing on a few of these, it was easy to see why it is so popular and why LH would dedicate a flight to celebrate the cocktail!
Before boarding the “Party Flight”, Lufthansa had arranged for a Samba dancer and a Brazilian Musician to provide entertainment for passengers waiting at the gate ahead of the flight. The combination of guitar music and a Samba dancer at an airport gate made for a bit of a surreal experience.
What really made it special was the fact that passengers got into the spirit at the gate with some exhibiting their Samba and singing skills. By far this one of my more enjoyable boarding experiences (aside from an FCT private transfer mind you!). I didn’t even mind being among the last people to board a very full flight! I wish I can post the videos but with so many passengers in the video, I do not want to violate anyone’s privacy.
However, here are a few snap-shots of the festivities that I can share:
Once aboard, passengers were greeted with a special ‘Amenity Kit’ to mark the occasion. Packed in a pouch made specifically for the occasion, passengers would find a baseball hat, CD of Brazilian music, Brazilian flags, coasters and other bits and pieces.
Once the Aircraft reached cruising altitude, and as part of the beverage service, the crew broke out the Caipirinha bottles and would pour a great cocktail for anyone that was interested. Safe to say there were very, very few empty hands! I also want to add that the crew was absolutely FANTASTIC. They got into the spirit of the party and would dance and sing along with the passengers making it feel truly like a party. Smiles everywhere!
It took a while for everyone to clear front of the aircraft as everyone wanted to come in to see the action. The party proceeded to spread throughout the rest of the aircraft as dancing and singing made its way down the aisles of the aircraft and would last the better part of 2 hours. The party itself did not climb up the stairs to First Class however several, if not all of the First Class passengers came down to join the rest of us on the main deck. After the festivities, everyone settled back into their seats and the flight once again became ‘normal’ with a fantastic meal service and even a few hours to spare for sleep.
In all, it was a truly fantastic flight and I was impressed to see that Lufthansa did something that is somewhat out of character for them. It’s nice to see the airline evolve into one that can have fun with their passengers and create some fantastic and unique travel experiences for them. I certainly enjoyed myself and had the opportunity to meet a lot of great people as a result of the party.
I even had the honor of sitting next to ‘Klaus Heidi’ for the flight. If you recall, Lufthansa ran a contest last year in Sweden that would award a lucky winner who changed their name to ‘Klaus Heidi’ a year’s worth of lodging in Berlin. I had a chance to get to know Klaus and will share how things have been going for him in a post later this week.
What the heck, here is a video that I have to share from the flight, it really says a lot more than any amount of words I type could ever say: